News: KL Homes Remain Affordable For Foreigners Despite Rent Increase

Mar 14, 2019

 

Average expatriate rents in Malaysia’s capital increased by 7.42 percent to US$1,621 per month in 2018 compared to US$1,509 in the prior year, according to the result of the latest accommodation survey conducted by ECA International.

Previously, rents in Kuala Lumpur saw a sustained drop in 2015 to 2017, as the local economy has been comparatively soft in the past few years. Another reason was that there was a large supply of rental properties despite weaker demand. Nonetheless, rents rebounded last year.

“Rents for apartments staged a recovery in 2018, but Kuala Lumpur is still very affordable for a major city in the region,” said ECA’s Regional Director for Asia Lee Quane.

In fact, average rents in neighbouring Singapore dipped 1.3 percent to US$4,215 per month, but the city-state still remains as Asia’s eighth most expensive location for expatriate to rent a home.

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Meanwhile, Hong Kong is once again the most expensive place to rent a home, with foreigners needing an average of US$10,929 to lease a flat for a month. It is followed by Tokyo (US$8,668), Shanghai (US$5,305), Seoul (US$5,245) and Yokohama (US$ 4,865).

“The main driver of increased rent across Hong Kong in 2018 was the limited availability
of housing, which has been a long-term issue for its housing market. Rent increases are not just limited to central Hong Kong anymore either; rents are expected to rise throughout outlying neighbourhoods in 2019 too, as international firms seek more affordable office spaces and leverage options in cheaper suburbs,” noted Quane.

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The survey was based on the average rental prices of an unfurnished, three-bedroom apartment in the midrange of the expatriate market. Rental prices were collected last September and have been converted into US dollars based on the exchange rate at that time.

 

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MJ Zie
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